Wine Blog

Sparkling in the Second City

Thanks to a number of separate events in the last week, I’ve had the luxury of tasting 55 extraordinary sparkling wines in close proximity, reminding me that these wines are especially enjoyable in the summer heat, and, as some of the bottlings are quite rare, resolving me to share the list, along with a few impressions…

Excepting a handful (including the hard-to-find vintage Champagnes), these are ALL wines to seek out and enjoy during the month+ of the glorious summer that’s left to us!


• Bisson 2011 Glera (Prosecco) Frizzante, Marca Trevigiana
the finest vintage of this perennial favorite; a delicate pearl and zesty acidity

• Voveti NV Prosecco

• Adami 2011 Prosecco ‘Bosco di Gica’, Valdobbiadene
one of Adami’s driest bottlings, with a surprising presence and body

• Santome NV Prosecco Brut, Conegliano Valdobbiadene

• Bisol NV Prosecco ‘Crede’, Valdobbiadene
a crowd-pleasing single-vineyard bottling, from one of the region’s best houses

• Bele Casel NV Prosecco ‘Col Fondo’, Asolo
only one fermentation here, finished in the bottle – hazy & cidery

• Costadila NV Prosecco ‘330 slm’, Colli Trevigiani
ditto on the one fermentation – this is uber-complex & arresting

• Sorelle Bronca NV Prosecco ‘Extra Dry’, Valdobbiadene

• Ferrando NV Erbaluce Spumante Brut, Caluso
exotic & keen, with superb mousse, clean mintiness & golden raisin

• Cave du Vin Blanc de Morgex 2009 Prie Blanc ‘Extreme’, Vallee d’Aoste

• Punta Crena 2011 ‘Pettirosso’ Rose, Liguria
this ruby-colored, dry, lightly sparkling rossesse blend is a new fave

• Fattoria Moretto NV Lambrusco Grasparossa di Castelvetro, Emilia-Romagna

• Xarmant 2011 Arabako Txakolina, Basque Country

• Segura Viudas NV Cava Brut, Penedes

• Raventos i Blanc 2009 Cava Brut, Penedes

• Gramona 2008 Cava ‘Gran Cuvee’, Penedes

• Gramona 2005 ‘III Lustros’ Brut Nature, Penedes
gorgeous iodine/soy/bit-o-honey ‘chew'; a deeply involved cava

• Avinyo NV Cava Rose, Penedes

• Jo Landron NV ‘Atmospheres’, Western Loire

• Theirry Puzelat 2010 ‘Petillant Naturel’, Loire
yay! this one-fermentation chenin blend is just singin’ right now

• Foreau NV Brut, Vouvray

• Huet 2005 Brut, Vouvray

• Barmes-Buecher 2009 Brut, Cremant d’Alsace
this is my favorite cremant in the region right now – very refined

• Benoit Ente NV Cremant de Bourgogne

• Andre et Michel Quenard NV Brut, Savoie

• Octavin NV ‘The Peteux’, Jura
this radically cool pet-nat is very alive and tangy – a surprising crowd-pleaser

• Causse-Marines 2010 ‘Preambulles’, Gaillac

• von Buhl 2010 Riesling Sekt, Pfalz

• Hermann J. Wiemer 2006 Brut, Finger Lakes
my vote for the best sparkling made in america…

• Jean-Paul Brun 2011 ‘FRV100′, Beaujolais
super-charming rose sparkling w/a bit of sweetness, great w/salumi

• Larmandier-Bernier NV Brut Tradition

• Larmandier-Bernier ‘Rose de Saignee’
very deeply colored, flavors of fresh cranberry juice

• Delamotte 1983 ‘Collection'(magnum)
coffee, tobacco, w/rich salty tropicality & raspberry

• Philipponnat 1982 ‘Reserve Millesime’
golden color, rainwater/seaweed nose, wet stones, creme brulee

• Lanson 1990 Brut
strong petillance, slight musk, brilliant acid (disgorged ’09)

• Krug 1995 Brut (magnum)
sourdough bread, dark cherry & caramel

• Deutz 1996 ‘Cuvee William Deutz’ Rose
super-pale, cream-soda color, coffee & balsamic on the palate

• Laurent-Perrier 1997 ‘Grand Siecle Alexandra’ Rose (magnum)

• Jacques Selosse 1998 Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Extra Brut
extremely full-bodied and palate coating, almost blunt

• Jacques Selosse 1999 Grand Cru Blanc de Blancs Extra Brut
yay! light perfume, high-toned and clean – LOVELY

• Pol Roger 1999 ‘Black Label’
very energetic palate feel – great length and balance

• Pol Roger 1999 Blanc de Blancs

• Bruno Paillard 1999 Brut

• Egly-Ouriet 1999 ‘Grand Cru Millesime’
ouch; smoky, reduced? too compact for me, raw tomato

• Egly-Ouriet 2002 ‘Grand Cru Millesime’

• Vilmart & Cie 1998 ‘Coeur de Cuvee’ Premier Cru (magnum)
glorious! still so much chewiness and depth

• Vilmart & Cie 1999 ‘Coeur de Cuvee’ Premier Cru (magnum)
again, the ’99 is more high-toned! this is elegant & refined

• Pierre Peters 1999 ‘Les Chetillons’ Blanc de Blancs (magnum)
grilled peaches, iodine – lean and crisp

• Pierre Peters 2000 ‘Les Chetillons’ Blanc de Blancs (magnum)
really closed and heavy, seemingly wrapped in plastic

• Deutz 2002 ‘Amour de Deutz’ Blanc de Blancs (magnum)
off-the-charts delicious, a surprising favorite

• Jacquesson 2000 Grand Cru Avize

• Agrapart & Fils 2002 ‘L’Avizoise’ Blanc de Blancs Grand Cru Extra Brut
an intimate, eloquent, erotic wine – unforgettable texture & body

• Marc Hebrart 2002 ‘Special Club’ Premier Cru

• Paul Bara 2002 ‘Special Club’ Grand Cru

• Vilmart & Cie 2002 ‘Grand Cellier Rubis’ Rose Premier Cru

jeremy quinn